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In The Giver, Lois Lowry offers a purposeful lack of description of Jonas' physical surroundings. His sleeping room consists of his bed and, on some occasions, Gabriel's crib, but aside from that we are given no details. It does have a door and seems to be the one place in his dwelling, and perhaps in the whole community, where Jonas can have any real privacy. We know it is the one room where Gabriel can sleep through the night without much fuss, but this is due to Jonas soothing the child with his "memories" rather than to any physical attribute of the room.
The dining room, too, lacks real description. It is the place where the family shares their dreams after the morning meal and significant events from their day after the evening meal. Much of the interaction between Jonas and his parents occurs here. Beyond a table and chairs, however, we never really get a sense of what is in the room. In fact, we get a sense that it is not a separate area at all. When family members move from the table to the shelf, desk, or cupboard, it does not appear that they leave the room. In Chapter 5, Lowry describes Jonas' mother cleaning up the morning meal and then placing the tray by the door for the Collection Crew to retrieve. This tells us that the family does not cook their own meals, and therefore their dwelling does not need a kitchen. We might speculate that aside from the sleeping rooms and, presumably, a bathroom, the dwelling consists of just one large room.
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